The Bouton Street neighborhood now has a playground it can literally call its own -- literally, because the neighborhood helped build it.
For most of the past week, corporate volunteers and members of the community raised the equipment and on Saturday, the playground officially opened.
"A park needs to be used correctly. The eyes and ears need to be the neighbors," said Mike Mocciae, Norwalk director of Recreation & Parks. "That's what we're encouraging and that's what it looks like is happening."
Sponsors including Pepperidge Farm and GE Capital provided the money. In June, local children provided input on what the playground should look like. Then neighbors like Da'Ron Sanders provided some elbow grease.
"[The new playground] is good. The last one wasn't so good," he said. "It was small, kids couldn't come over and play. Now it's better for everybody."
Volunteers from Northeast Community Church assisted in the build.
"Because of the work the city, the businesses and we have been a part of, I think it's going to be a real benefit to the whole neighborhood, the whole community," said Thomas Mahoney, a pastor at the church.
Mocciae said the city had kept safety in mind, as well.
"We reactivated the spotlights that shine on the park," he said. "It's brighter so police can see any activity."
Mahoney said he hopes the park will stay cleaner, safer and more useful.
"Hopefully there will be a pride about Bouton park because of the neighbors' engagement in it," he said.
The project cost about $88,000. Sponsors provided over $86,000, which means the city is only on the hook for $2,500.
"We didn't have to pay for installation; installation was part of the community build," Mocciae said. "It really turned out unbelievable."